15 August 2016
London Irish Director of Rugby Nick Kennedy is looking for his side to build on Saturday’s impressive 28-12 victory over Harlequins at The Stoop.
The Exiles ran in four tries during a clinical display to get their pre-season campaign off to a winning start as preparations for the Greene King IPA Championship gathers pace.
And Kennedy, who now gears-up his charges for the visit of Nottingham Rugby this Friday, is hoping for more of the same.
“It was a really good team performance against a difficult Harlequins outfit,” said Kennedy.
“Everyone in the squad got a run out which was pleasing as it gave us a chance to see what each player could do. We will do the same next week and see what they can do, and hopefully they can step up to the mark and keep improving.
“There are still a lot of things for us to work on and we will get back into training today and hopefully iron those things out before the Nottingham game – it’s all about improving week on week.”
Irish demonstrated a steely determination in defence, an aspect of the contest which pleased Kennedy.
He said: “Dec Danaher has worked extremely hard with the boys on their defence and his preparation is relentless. He works the players hard day in day out – the lads call him the grim reaper because he’s always around the guys tapping them on the shoulder and showing them clips.
“All of the coaches have worked incredibly hard this summer and it’s great to see how everything is coming together on the field. It’s important that we continue in the same fashion and not rest on our laurels.”
The Exiles were without Topsy Ojo and new recruit Ben Ransom at the weekend as well as Shane Geraghty, Mike Coman, Dan Marshall, Alex Lewington, Theo Brophy Clews and Dave Porecki. With five players also missing due to England Under-18s commitments, Kennedy believes there is healthy competition in the London Irish ranks at present.
“There is a lot of competition for places and that can only be good for the club going into the new season,” said Kennedy.
“We have two more games before the season starts so there is plenty of time for players to stake a claim for a place in the team to play Doncaster Knights in the opening Championship match,” he added.
London Irish take on Nottingham Rugby this Friday, before rounding off their pre-season programme against Loughborough Students (kick-off 7.30pm).
Both games take place at Hazelwood with tickets available upon arrival for only £5 adults (under-18s go free). Parking is also available on the evenings for £5 per car**
If you require disabled parking at Hazelwood for either of our home pre-season friendlies please call 01932 750 100.
*Subject to availability
**There are a limited number of car parking spaces – first come first served